The 2021 Hyundai Bayon light SUV has been unveiled for Europe overnight – but this pint-sized crossover isn't bound for Australian shores.
Riding on the same platform as the European-market i20 light hatch – which will come to Australia in performance N guise only – the Bayon slots into Hyundai's European SUV line-up as its entry-level, B-segment model, below the small-sized Kona also offered in Australia.
The compact SUV's focus on the European market is reflected in its name, derived from the town of Bayonne in south-west France.
On the design front, the Bayon opts for a higher-riding, more aggressive take on the standard i20 hatch's creased styling, with a large front grille, a rising shoulder line and split LED headlights, the latter seeing the upper daytime-running light units connected across the width of the bonnet by a thin black trim strip.
At the rear, slim vertical LED tail-light strips are joined by a full-width LED bar to create a 'H' shape, while along the side alloy wheels up to 17 inches in diameter fill the arches.
Nine exterior colours are available – including the hero Mangrove Green hue – with seven of the finishes available with a Phantom Black contrast roof.
Readers familiar with the new-generation i20's cabin will find few surprises inside the new Bayon, with the city car's 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen (with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) carrying over to the SUV.
Other available interior features include an eight-speaker Bose sound system, wireless smartphone charging and three USB ports.
Under its compact sheetmetal, the Bayon measures 4180mm long, 1775mm wide and 1490mm tall (on 16-inch wheels), with a 2580mm wheelbase – likely slotting it into the 'light SUV' class should it eventually make its way to Australia, alongside the Hyundai Venue currently sold Down Under.
Boot space with the rear seats upright sits at 411 litres – up 60 litres over the i20 hatch, and up 56 litres over Australia's Venue – or 1205 litres with the second row folded.
The European engine line-up is headlined by a 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine with 48-volt mild-hybrid assistance – the latter electrical system reducing fuel economy and CO2 emissions by running auxiliary systems and performing
Available in 74kW/172Nm and 88kW/200Nm states of tune, the engine is paired as standard with a six-speed 'intelligent' manual – which controls the clutch electronically, rather than via a hydraulic system, allowing it to be disconnected by the car's systems to save fuel.
A seven-speed dual-clutch automatic is available as an option, while the three-pedal shifter also scores rev-matching, a first for a Hyundai model free of N or N Line badging.
All models are front-wheel-drive, despite the Bayon's rugged looks and up to 183mm of ground clearance.
Hyundai's SmartSense active safety suite is available, including adaptive cruise control (with support for navigation data), lane-keep assist, lane-following assist, auto high-beams, autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection and support for intersections, and driver attention monitoring.
Also available is low-speed reverse autonomous emergency braking, plus blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, the latter pair capable of both detecting and braking for obstacles.
The 2021 Hyundai Bayon will go on sale in Europe in the coming months, with a UK launch reportedly pencilled in for June.
An Australian launch is understood to not be in Hyundai Australia's plans, given it already offers the similarly-sized Venue locally.
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